Washable wool

The few times that I have used washable wool, I have found the garment would sag. Can any of you recommend a good one.


Bill's picture

many of the superwash wool benefit by drying in a dryer. cascade 220 superwash will slightly shrink back to the original size.

ronhuber's picture

Thanks, Bill. I will try it out - have been wanting to knit something for a great nephew that his mom can throw in a washer.

CLABBERS's picture

I have used a few different superwash marino/nylon blends and found that they wash and dry well in machines. They keep their shape pretty well. I get mine from KnitPicks.

raydio's picture

I have found that I get sagging and a "floppy" constitution to the item, when I have knit a looser gauge. If I knit a tighter gauge, it holds its shape. I am not big on blocking-- I only lay flat and smooth and pat into shape-- the shape it already has. I know that because of the nullification of the barbed surface of the wool fibers, they can no longer cling and support each other, and cannot hold the blocked out shaped very well, if at all, depending on the specific wool's processing.

It works when it does and it doesn't when it doesn't. I love pure, natural wool, and I don't yet have enough of them to look to the convenience of machine washing. I still have the time to hand wash my woolies and with some of them-- like my Shetland Fair Isles, I just couldn't ever put them in a machine. The great thing about wool is that it is virtually self-cleaning of everyday schmutz, and I don't wear them much due to living in a warmish climate, that (gasp) I may not wash them for years at a time, if that.

I have never looked at blocking as a "part of the washing/finishing process". As I said, I just lay it out and shape. Blocking to correct an issue or to make the garment have a certain "pressed" look works better on pure wool and never on cotton.
Anyway, I think you will find out which washables work in whichever ways as you knit them. I read reviews about various ones, but take it all with a grain of my experience's salt. I like my wool as unprocessed as I can get it, but that's just me.

Tallguy's picture

You seem to have misunderstood the meaning of the word "block" as applied to knitting. Perhaps it is better if you used the term "wet processing" where water is used to process the finished garment. Whether it is steam, misting, or a dunk into warm soapy water, the process is the same. And laying it out flat, or over a curved shape, is the final step. That is blocking. It involves moisture, and allowing to dry. Whether you want to force a change of shape by stretching and pulling or just let it do its own thing, it is still blocking. EVERY piece of knitting must go through that process in order for it to be called "finished". Of course, if you aren't using an animal fibre, then it really doesn't matter much.